Wednesday, January 6, 2010

More on EJF by Eli Neuberger


5TJewishTimes

The recent Tropper scandal truly boggles the mind! I do not recall a scandal of this magnitude, where someone like that led an organization in which so many prominent Roshei Yeshiva and Torah leaders were either directly or indirectly associated. How could that be? How could this happen?

Perhaps it might be wise to examine the history of Rabbi Leib Tropper.

He has been involved with Kiruv for close to 40 years. After unsuccessful stints in Ohr Somayach of Jerusalem and Monsey, he established a Kiruv Yeshiva on his own called Kol Yaakov. But his Yeshiva never hit the big time of the Kiruv world. ....

38 comments :

  1. This article reveals a very disturbing point:
    "I was told by many people in the field of Kiruv that the criteria established by the EJF for conversions was lower than those of the very Modern Orthodox rabbis that Tropper was fighting against."

    Like I said before, this story proves that the haredim could not care less about halacha or covnersion standards. It is all political and financial game for them. The only reason they attacked Druckman was to set up their own treif beis din.

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  2. Here's a more plausible scenario:
    Tropper had two different talks for two different audiences.

    For Tom Kaplan, the talk was that EJF was all about encouraging intermarrieds to join the Jewish People.

    The Roshe Yeshiva were told something different: It was about raising standards. (In plain English, that means concentrating power within the world of Litvishe charedi Roshei Yeshiva regarding a very important matter, namely "Who is a Rabbi." This played upon their contempt for the Modern Orhodox world, as it effectively delegitimized all Rabbis who were outside the Roshei Yeshivas' sphere of influence.

    One would hope that Dr. Kaplan will continue to pursue his ideal of helping the Jewish People by finding projects that are truly worthy of the ideals he espouses and within the ideals of Torah.

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  3. it's ahrd to believe, but here we are, weeks later, and still trying to take the 'Eternal' out of the EJF. (The remaining 'JF' were taken out by the Great MeNuval himself!)

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  4. Eternal Jewish Cover UpJanuary 6, 2010 at 4:05 PM

    Readers are telling Rabbi Harry Maryles that Tropper has been calling the who's who of the yeshivishe and kiruv worlds and telling them it was all a scam manufactured by Guma.

    Coupled with the fact that Eckstein at YWN (who takes his orders from EJF's Lubinsky and Agudah characters) does not allow comments about Tropper's guilt, the majority in the yeshivos are duped into thinking Tropper is an innocent man who was set up.

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  5. As a Lakewooder, I can assure you that we are not duped by the charlatans who parade around as Daas Torah. Eckstein and his ilk are held in contempt.

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  6. Overheard in a Brooklyn Yeshiva corridor'sJanuary 6, 2010 at 5:33 PM

    I can second that, I overheard many Rabeyim and Bochurim talk about the Tropper scandal, but not in the way that Tropper is guilty. But that he is being framed and manipulated by an evil Billionaire and oh poo poo what is this evil man doing to this Tzaddik. Of course anyone who knows Tropper knows that is 110% his voice. Those that do know it is him ("Tropper sympathizers" )I have heard say "nu nu, it is him, but he was framed, this girl was from Houston so was the Billionaire, and a tzaddik has a bigger yetzer hora, however he must have done teshiva, because a tzaddik who sins it is assumed he did teshiva the next day"

    This is the mad genius of Tropper, he can use anything in his favor. He is probably so happy he made that big stink in Israel about how Guma tried to kill him in the hotel, it all makes sense now, if he tried to kill me, then it is not beyond him to just try frame me.

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  7. The end of the VeltJanuary 6, 2010 at 5:39 PM

    "Eternal Jewish Cover Up said" you could not be more accurate. We are missing a great point here. Yes he was caught red handed, but he is clearly getting away with it with all these conspiracy theories he is creating.

    Rav Sternbuch is the sole voice who is standing up. But that is obviously not enough as we can see. Until one of the EJF heavy Rabbonim, such as R' Feinstein and others of his ilk, who were dripping in the fat and money of the EJF affair do not stand up and say. I WAS WRONG TO SUPPORT THIS MENUVAL! I AM NO LONGER SUPPORTING HIM!!!! it will all stay the same.


    We all think Tropper is sitting in shame with black sack cloth doing tshuva? Adaraba my friends, the fact that he had no shame and went shortly after this all broke to be a special guest speaker for a yeshiva/ kollel shows his true character. Not only is he not in charota, he is on a high of getting away with it, and seeing the true "character" of all these "gedolim" who still are bestowing their cover and friendship on him. This is the beginning of the downfall of the Yeshivish velt as we know it. Soon nobody will take any Godol seriously.

    WAKE UP PEOPLE!!

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  8. Excellent analysis.

    You are correct that this man is not going away. Want proof? Go to the Kol Yakov web site - http://www.horizons.edu/. His picture is on the main page and many others. Ok, so you may say they have not updated their web page.

    Call the yeshiva at their official number at http://www.horizons.edu/contactus.htm. Ask to speak to Rabbi T. The response is not that he is no longer affiliated with the organization, it is that he has no voice mail and they will take your message and give it to him.

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  9. "Anyone who thinks Tropper sinned, is mistaken". Is that the argument of last resort?
    Well, in the same way that hostory repeats itself for empires, they rise and fall, so it is happening to the Rabbis.

    Perhaps the last century (give or take a few decades) was the age of the Litvish gedolim. That age has now come to an end. There are some who are clinging on to it, but it is in its last desperate breaths.

    The "Hochma" is no longer in the Lithuanian Yeshivot, anymore than any othe rkind of Yeshiva. On the other hand, there are Gedolim who are not even recognized by the Litvishers, but who know more, and behave more in line with the Torah.

    The Kavod which the Talmidei hachmamim once upon a time enjoyed even from secular people, today is not even coming from religious people.

    The systemic corruption and moral turpitude which has come out of this affair, is something that perhaps has not been matched since Jacob Frank. And what is worse, is that many are still clinging on to it, and cannot let go.

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  10. Even regular folks are in denial. I was telling an agunah in my neighborhood, who is usally quite astute and world-knowledgeable, about Tropper when she suddenly just shut me down and told me to leave!

    It's really bad news out here in the trenches.

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  11. Hopefully there IS videa and it'll be released as a last resort.

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  12. Joseph is right! The video has to be released. Worse than what happened is allowing him to get away with it and coming out on top as a victim. We can't let this menuval become stronger from this otherwise the cancer which is currently somewhat benign will become malignant! Please Rav Eidensohn he can't get away with this. I beg you on behalf of Klall Yisroel!

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  13. Even if there is a video (which would be hideous to see, for many reasons), it wouldn't stop the corruption.
    They are just waiting to whitewash it, they will find a scapegoat soon - Shemitta is another 6 years away so they cant atatck heter mechira,... they will find something.

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  14. Perhaps the last century (give or take a few decades) was the age of the Litvish gedolim. That age has now come to an end. There are some who are clinging on to it, but it is in its last desperate breaths.


    I think it is insightful and hopeful comment. It is not Orthodox Judaism that got corrupted, it is litvish (and Hassidic) Judaism which got corrupted to the core.

    Once the Torah leadership was belong to the Sephardic Jews and I think the pendalum is shifting and torah will return there. The new generation of real gedolim probably will be Shas rabbis like rabbi Amsalem and Dati Leumi rabbis like rabbi Mordechai Elon.

    What say you mekubal ?

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  15. I don't think the videos will make any difference. I was just informed that Rav Reuven Feinstein said that Tropper has done teshuva.

    I think that most people acknowledge the validity of the recordings but say that Tropper was setup and and that while he did some type of sin - he has fully repented. There is a massive denial that there was any corruption of the EJF or that the rabbis were corrputed by payments.

    As I said before, Tropper simply waited this one out and the rabbis have accepted his version of the story.

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  16. Is Monsey saying that with a straight face?

    Shas is even more corrupt than the Agudah, if you thought that wasn't possible. Shas doesn't even have a veneer of being upstanding. They come across as slimy moneygrubbing crooks. How many of them have gone to jail?

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  17. I would ask Rav Eidensohn to reconsider his position.

    I would argue that releasing the video is very beneficial.

    The CHazal of "Vadai assa teshuva" on dvar ervah of talmid chochom does not apply here because it was not bain adam lamakom, it was coercion of a non-Jewish woman trying to be megayer. And who says the klal applies in the case of great chilul Hashem? Certainly not the poskim who rule someone like Tropper must be removed from his position even if there is only kol, which is much less than the evidence available.

    Tropper should be put on notice that if he does not stop being rodef kavod like a brazen dog, he will forever be haunted by the videos being in the public realm and the ensuing circus that will emerge from it.

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  18. The video may help make it clear that he did what they say he did and its not rumors or audio fakes...Trust me set up is beloney no Ehrlich Yid would do what he did. You don't have to be a Rabbi to resist this yetzer hara. Besides he brought the yetzer hora on himself. He forced these women to do these acts with him and others. Is Reuven Feinstein so stupid to think he did teshuvah and that now everything is ok? Tropper is a sick man. He enjoys rape what does that tell you? He would need years to reflect and do Teshuvah on what he did. I guess his brother inherited all the sechel in that family.

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  19. What about all the filty, disgusting nivul peh that Tropper spoke out of his mouth?

    Is that the language of a talmid chochom, yiras shomoyim who temporarily stumbled in sin?

    R' Reuvein's yeshiva, MTJ Staten Island, is very makpid on how bochurim speak, even when using lashon nikiya.

    Would they be moychel a bochur there who spoke even one word of Tropper's filth, brushing it off as the bochur did teshuva now?

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  20. Drunken sailor, you are right. I'm not sure who Reuvein Feinstein is but he's not who we used to think he is. Hakinah Hataivah Vehakovod motziin es haadam minhaolam.

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  21. A choshuve Yid, a tzadik, who is a prominent mashgiach told me that when Chazal give you a rule about human nature, it is only a general rule that does not apply to exceptional sociopaths and reshoyim.

    For instance, the Yam shel Shlomo in Kiddushin says on the Gemara of Yidden being rachmonim, bayshonim, gomlei chasodim, that in the yeridas hadoros, one siman out of three is lo aleinu enough. Zogt der mashgiach shlita, there are select individuals that are so sick or evil, that they can be Yidden with yichus even without a single siman! R' Shlomo Luria and the Gemara are only referring to most people!

    If there was ever an example of a perverted and arrogant person masquerading as a talmid chochem, I would pick Leib Tropper!

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  22. NEWS FLASH: I heard that Trooper's new defense is that it was a DIBUK inside of him speaking to Shannon Orand! Tropper is a tzadik and wants to go to Erezt Yisroel to ask Reb Dovid Batzri to exorcise the Dibuk!

    Rabbosi - Shame on you!!! How could you not have been dan him l'kaf zechus?!

    This is just as valid a defense as R' Ruven saying all is well - "Tropper did Teshuva"! Maybe he did - but he has no business in chinuch anymore - and surly not in ANYTHING that involves (women) challenges to his weakness!

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  23. I'm not surprised that Rabbi Reuven Feinstein has declared that Tropper has done teshuvah. It is consistent with the ongoing Christianization of Torah Judaism by the Chareidim. We are witness to such parallel themes as, the rabbi as priest, or intermediary, between man and God; daas Torah and papal infallibility; Art Scroll sanitized biographies and canonized sainthood; dual and differing systems of justice for clergy, and the laity.

    One of the stark differences between Christianity and Judaism has always been repentence. In the former, you confess to the priest, say 3 Hail Marys, and Yoshke forgives you. In Judaism, teshuva means charata, apology, restitution, changed behavior, tefila, tsedaka.

    Now, after a couple weeks, Rabbi Feinstein declares that Tropper has done teshuva for chatoyim that defy the imagination. This is neo-Christian.

    Moshe Finkel's case was similar. A few weeks after the Monsey treif butcher was caught, he issued a letter of apology, that appeared to have been drafted by a rabbi in Israel. That's it, a letter. All of the other elements of teshuva were absent.

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  24. Lakewood yungermanJanuary 7, 2010 at 2:44 AM

    Reader, wow! You sound like such a Talmid Chacham! Quoting the holy Mashgiach, and the Yam Shel Shlomo on a blog under a secret name, so you can smear someone behind his back with motzi Shem rah (which he is not required to be mochel) and bizui talmid chacham (which will take away any chelek of Gan Eiden you might have gotten while learning the Yam Shel Shlomo that you are so zealous to quote), wow!
    Im sure the holy Mashgiach thought that going on blog to do your holy work secretly was something that the Yam shel shlomo would be very proud of. Keep up the good work. Ashrecha!

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  25. "On the other hand, there are Gedolim who are not even recognized by the Litvishers, but who know more, and behave more in line with the Torah."

    Just wondering, Eddie -- are you referring to anyone in particular or just non-Litvish gedolim in general?

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  26. 1. Menuval Leib Tropper was caught doing things the description of which does not fit this blog.
    2. Menuval Tropper was the one who successfully pushed for the delegitimization of the Rabbinical Council of America (RCA), and achieved that conversions done by RCA rabbis are now no longer recognized in Israel.
    3. The delegitimization of the RCA happened right after the RCA took the brave step to oust Menuval Mordecai Tendler, after the RCA had established that Menuval Tendler had been doing things the description of which does not fit this blog. The RCA was brave because Menuval Tendler is a grandson of Reb Moshe Feinstein and the main editor of the Iggros Moshe. May the memory of Reb Moshe yet be blessed.
    4. Menuval Tropper has great influence on the great rabbis in Israel. A major channel for that influence is rabbi Nachum Eisenstein.
    5. At the time of the Tendler affair, after the truth had become clear to all, it was rabbi Nachum Eisenstein who defiantly invited Menuval Tendler to give a shiur Torah in his Shul in Maalot Dafna.
    6. The Psilah of Rav Druckman by the Beit Din headed by Rav Sherman, and the blatantly immoral consequences thereof. occurred after pressure of Menuval Tropper and Rabbi Eisenstein. The delegitimization of Rav Druckman mirrors the delegitimization of the RCA.
    7. The ban of the books of Rav Slifkin occurred after Menuval Tropper exerted pressure on the great rabbis of Israel.
    8. Rabbi Nachum Eisenstein maintains that someone who does not reject the scientific consensus about the age of the Universe cannot be a Dayan who oversees conversion.
    9. Presumably, therefore, Rabbi Eisenstein maintains that someone who accepts the scientific consensus cannot be a Ger Tzedek. Menuval Tropper teaches that someone who does not believe in "Emunas Chachamim" cannot convert.
    10. At this time, the rabbis who appoint Dayanim in Israel did not openly relate to the Tropper scandal. We did not hear from who gave Semicha to the Menuval, and not from who supported his work.
    11. A couple of days before the scandal broke, a group of rabbis, including Rav Elyashiv and Rav Shteinman, issued a ban against orthodox internet sites. If this was not an attempt to cover up the scandal, it is a case of Mar'it Ayin.

    Whether by their support for the Menuval, or by their attempt to cover up, or by their silence, the rabbis stand exposed. It should have been clear before, from the disastrous consequences of left-wing government policies, such as the Oslo agreements and the "Disengagement," which were carried out only by virtue of the support of leading rabbis, or from the rabbis' legal activism in the realm of science: The Emperor has no clothes.

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  27. After my wife, Eli Neuberger is quite possibly my favorite person

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  28. I thought the video was a joke, is there one in existence?
    If this was a secular scandal, the video would be "juicy". As Torah believing Jews, it is not an ethical thing to release.
    a) Those who do follow the Torah should take no pleasure in this kind of video.
    b) Even if it were leaked, i presume it would only strengthen the resolve of the reshaim.

    The more people try to do "kiruv" to tropper and his corrupt world, the more they become a laughing stock.

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  29. Lakewood Phony DetectorJanuary 7, 2010 at 2:19 PM

    A "Lakewood yungerman" is not allowed to have an internet connection according to the takanna of the local rabbonim. Only baal habatim who can prove a legitimate business need are exempt from the takanna.

    I suppose the farfrumter kollel yungerman knows better than the zokein R' Moishe Shternbuch who said there is a doch a chiyuv to be mefarsem against Tropper.

    Let's help the Lakewood drei kop be dan lekaf "zchus" on Tropper.

    Tropper invalidated Charedi gerim (lo sonu es hager) because of politics - Rachmonus & Gemilas Chesed?

    Tropper destroyed Slifkin's reputation and career - Rachmonus & Gemilas Chesed?

    Tropper lies in the name of the gedolei haposkim - Bayshonus?

    Tropper speaks filth and nivul peh out of his sewer mouth - Bayshonus?

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  30. The Eternal Jewish Fraud is coming to town in 10 days for an intermarried couples seminar.

    http://www.datanet.org/Meet_the_Rabbis.html

    I hope R' Yerachmiel Fried of the DATA Kollel stops interacting with them and does not take Tropper's dirty bribe money.

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  31. MOshe Rafael - I totally agree with you!

    Yeshayahu - I was referring maninly to great Rabbis outside of the Litvish dalet amos - eg Rav Ahron Lichtenstein, who is as great as anyone in Haredi world or greater, but is also a tzaddik in his personal life.
    Another example - There was a scandal concering Metzger, re child abuse and other neveilot, when he was running for Chief Rabbi. He was Efrati's chum - efrati being r Elyashiv's main power broker. Metzger is nothign in Torah learning, he isn't even a qualified dayan. He was put up agains R Yaakov Ariel, of Ramat Gan. R Ariel is a real giant - one only has to read his books, or see him give a shiur to see how great he is.
    But because he gives some lenient views for example in geirus, he is shunned by the Haredi world.
    By now it is clear that the EJF standards of geirus are about as kosher as a McDonalds cheeseburger (and I dont mean in Tachana Mercazi).

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  32. http://www.eternaljewishfamily.org/site/programs/outreach/

    "The Eternal Jewish Family (EJF) is a project of Horizons"

    So the parent company, by their own admission, is still headed by Tropper.

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  33. "Tropper did teshuva."

    For what? Did he contact his mistress to beg for mechila?

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  34. So, if EJF is doing an intermarried conference in 10 days and Tropper is calling Roshei Yeshiva (and getting them on his side), then it would seem the Monday's meeting was a success for Tropper.

    I did not see any information released, but it would seem that they received their money for the year and that Tropper still holds the purse strings. Another such indication is EJF's modifying their press release to delete any indication that a scandal was brought about by "one person".

    That's it, I'm done. I am disassociating myself from the Yeshiva world. Not a penny more of my own tzedakah will go to any yeshiva until I hear that this corruption has been dealt with. I believe I will start walking to shteebles to daven as well.

    A yeshiva used to be there to teach people how to be frumme yidden. I don't know what they are for now, besides to pay the bills of the Roshei yeshiva, rabbeim and Kollel Yunger Leit.

    Feh!

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  35. I have the feeling that many rabbinic leaders (as well as askanim) have never heard the tape. perhaps we need to make a concerted effort in forwarding them to those people?

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  36. Observer from AfarJanuary 7, 2010 at 6:22 PM

    By its own admission EJF is a division of Horizons, which is unquestionably under the control of Tropper. Tropper's purported resignation from EJF was just a ruse. Anybody who is involved in supporting, promoting or bolstering EJF in any way is facilitating this fraud. To tie this is in with the more recent post regarding R. Wachtfogel, this would include its current director, R. Blum, a member of R. Wachtfogel's mishpacha and yeshiva.

    R. Feinstein's yeshiva received a lot of money from it's association with Tropper. What is R. Wachtfogel's motive? R. Wachtfogel has a lot of explaining to do. Attacking R. Eidensohn is not going to fool any one.

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  37. Since this blog is called Daas Torah, and even if we discuss Shatnez, we end up talking about Slifkin, I have my own Slifkin qn:

    Someone is quoted as criticizing Slifkin's book, "And he also writes that Chazal Hakedoshim can err chas vesholom in worldly matters chas vesholom and therefore [they can err] in halochoh as well chas vesholom, as he wrongly proves from maseches Horayos"


    I asked this question myself, ie were Chazal theoretically able to err. The opposite would make them infallible.
    A Hareid rosh yeshiva , very haredi, told me there were many cases of Chazal going off the rail. One example is Elisha Ben Abuya.
    Indeed, there are many other stories of Chazal getting into mortal fights with each other. R Yochanan with Reish Lakish; The famous Tannur of Aknai. Even the story of Akavya Ben Mahalelel.
    But these are individual or group cases.

    Can a recorded position of Hazal be wrong, theoretically?
    Or, can the Sanhedrin err?

    The Torah says it can err, and has specific Korbanot for the Sanhedrin when they err.

    But this does not affet Daas Torah - because the Haredi claim is that no halacha in The talmud can be wrong or errant. Hence, the sanhedrin, which was disestablished in 70CE, could err up to that point. But, according to daas Torah ideology, nothing recorded inthe Gemara, ie after destruction of the Temple, can be wrong.
    How did the Sages of the Talmud acquire this immunity to error, if the Neviim, Kings, Prophets, and sanhedrin didnt have it?

    And this question is just a question, and not a heresy.

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